STOCKHOLM -- Decorative LED lighting is now standard in kitchen cabinetry as well as closet organizing systems.

As a matter of fact, LED lighting is so prevalent in residential spaces that the recognition by the 2014 Nobel Prize Committee of a product so commonplace could seem surprising. That is until you consider the revolutionary impact it has had on the lighting industry over the past 20 years. Its growth has been so tremendous that LED lighting is expected to become the main lighting source in the 21st century, replacing florescent lights. Even global furniture retailer IKEA announced in 2012 that its lighting business would be completely LED by 2016.

The Nobel Prize Committee took note of the impact of LED lighting when it announced its 2014 Nobel laureates in Physics, awarding the honor to the inventors of blue light-emitting diode (LED): Isamu Akasaki and Hiroshi Amano of Nagoya University, Japan, and Shuji Nakamura of the University of California, Santa Barbara, CA.

Red and green LED lights have been around for approximately 50 years but the development of blue LEDs lead to the creation of white light that is long-lasting and energy efficient. The committee singled out the role of LEDs in saving the Earth’s resources as well as the potential to increase the quality of life for over 1.5 billion people in the developing world who lack access to electric grids. Because of low power requirements, LEDs can be powered by solar energy.

The three scientists will share the $1.1 million prize.

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